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The treasury has become the latest body to join the fight to improve the business environment for women.

Fashion retailer French Connection has insisted it remains on track to return to annual profit despite revealing widening half-year losses and an £800,000 hit from the House of Fraser collapse.

Credit reference agency Equifax has received a £500,000 fine after a cyber attack in 2017 put the personal information of up to 15 million people was put at risk.

Bricklaying robots which can build a house a day could be the answer to the skills shortage which is holding back East Anglia’s construction industry, according to a new survey.

The government has launched a new savings scheme to help people on low incomes start a “rainy day” fund.

Primark owner Associated British Foods (AB Foods) has warned it will take a £20m hit due to the stronger pound.

Bovis Homes has joined a string of housebuilders to overcome uncertainty in the property market after a jump in half-year profits.

Retail sales continued to slow in August despite warm weather-fuelled grocery spending and back-to-school purchases.

A charity has warned that demand for debt help could reach a five-year high across 2018 as people increasingly find themselves struggling to cover essential spending.

Coca-Cola is to buy Costa Coffee for £3.9bn.

Big Six energy companies Npower and SSE have got a provisional green light from the energy watchdog for a deal to merge their retail units.

Accounting firm Grant Thornton has been fined £3m by the industry watchdog for misconduct over its audits of Vimto-maker Nichols and the University of Salford.

Firms in hospitality, hairdressing and social care are being urged to offer jobs to the victims of modern slavery.

Fashion and homeware retailer Laura Ashley has seen annual profits crash to just £100,000 following a sales slide and hefty writedowns on a property sold in Singapore.

Housebuilding giant Persimmon brushed aside concerns over the impact of the recent interest rate hike as it posted a 13% leap in profits and said customer demand remained resilient.

KPMG has been slapped with a £3m fine for misconduct in relation to audits of fashion retailer Ted Baker.

House of Fraser collapsed owing creditors such as Armani, Diesel and Prada almost £500m, new documents have shown.

Most workers believe they are being monitored by their boss, a new study reveals.

House of Fraser has apologised to customers after cancelling all orders placed online.

Energy companies, the Environment Agency and the Bank of England have been named among the best for offering staff a decent work-life balance.

The “shocking excess” of Britain’s boardrooms has been revealed in a report which shows company chief executives have had an 11% pay rise in the past year.

A new campaign to tackle pension scams has been launched as figures reveal victims of fraud lost an average of £91,000 last year.

Samsung is expected to unveil its new Galaxy Note 9 smartphone on Thursday as the technology giant looks to strengthen its position as the world’s largest smartphone maker.

Good spending on food and drink failed to offset a wider slowdown in consumer spending last month, new figures show.

Sports Direct and Southern Trains have been named among the most improved brands by UK consumers.

The government has created a culture encouraging companies to bid for contracts at undeliverable prices, a committee has warned.

Time is running out for small businesses to lodge complaints over the way they were treated by Royal Bank of Scotland’s controversial restructuring unit.

A new lighter version of the Cadbury Dairy Milk bar containing 30% less sugar is to go on sale from next year as part of industry efforts to respond to the obesity crisis.

EasyJet is to join rivals in launching a legal complaint against the European Commission over air traffic control strikes which have so far cost it more than £25m.

Buoyant parcel sales are offsetting falling letter deliveries at Royal Mail as it grapples with business’ continuing uncertainty around the recent shake-up of personal data rules.

The trustees of a controversial black-tie event mired in sexual harassment allegations have been censured by the charity commission.

DIY chain B&Q is investing £100m in bringing down overall shop prices in an attempt to cut back on promotions and discounts.

Investment in new warehouses and IT systems have put online grocer Ocado into the red for the first half of the year.

The electric vehicle market is expected to receive a boost from the transport secretary today.

A union has called for better protection for offshore workers on the 30th anniversary of the Piper Alpha disaster.

Fears of summer travel chaos at EasyJet are mounting after it revealed it cancelled nearly 1,300 flights last month – with no end in sight to air traffic control (ATC) strike action.

Sainsbury’s has insisted it has the “right strategy in place” despite seeing a slowdown in sales.

Brexit is going to cause bigger rises in the cost of living for households outside London, a new study suggests.

“Self-imposed austerity” among shoppers ahead of Brexit has caused a crash in consumer confidence, a new survey suggests.

A “landmark” tribunal has ruled that a group of 65 Hermes couriers are workers, not self-employed.

Reforms in how public sector contracts are awarded mean businesses will now have to show how they are tackling issues like the gender pay gap, ethnic minority representation and modern slavery.

Annual profits at Dixons Carphone have slumped by almost a quarter – and the group has warned that cost pressures will continue to squeeze its margins.

Working parents are being urged to go home on time today, the longest day of the year, after a study showed many are regularly putting in extra hours.

Further cost cuts are on the horizon at Debenhams after the retailer issued a profit warning.

The number of payments made by debit card overtook those made by cash for the first time last year, according to a trade association.

Dixons Carphone has revealed details of a cyber attack which saw 5.9 million customer bank card details and 1.2 million personal data records hacked.

PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) and one of its partners who audited the accounts of now collapsed retailer BHS have been fined.

A Brexit-fuelled fall in hiring among small businesses by 2022 could cost the economy more than £6bn a year, it has been claimed.

The number of company directors disqualified from office has increased for the third year running, according to new research.

The head of the UK’s biggest supermarket has said business rates have played a “large part” in the demise of some retailers.

A strong performance in WH Smith’s travel arm helped offset a decline in high street sales.

One in eight people do not have a “rainy day” fund they can access quickly, new research shows.

Consumers are increasingly falling victim to scammers posing as professionals from financial and legal services, Citizens Advice has warned.

The UK’s £2bn funerals market is facing a two-pronged assault from government and a business watchdog.

The average price of a pint in Britain is 60p more than drinkers think is reasonable, according to a survey.

Britain’s financial watchdog has launched a sweeping crackdown on high-cost credit as part of efforts to protect vulnerable consumers.

Nearly 100 Carphone Warehouse stores are to close this year as the retailer’s new boss pledges to “take action” to tackle challenges in the firm’s troubled mobile phone unit.

Pret A Manger’s chief executive has announced staff are to receive a £1,000 bonus after the company announced it was to be bought for £1.5bn to a businesscontrolled by a family of German billionaires.

Full year profits at Marks and Spencer have collapsed due to the costs of a brutal store closure programme.

Action is needed to tackle “rip-off” overdraft fees which can cost up to seven times more than a payday loan, according to Which?.

Supermarket Tesco will scrap its e-commerce delivery site, putting 500 jobs at risk.

Ryanair has followed the announcement of a solid increase in full-year profits with a warning that rising oil prices could hit its performance over the next 12 months.

The maximum stake on a fixed-odds betting terminal (FOBT) is be to slashed from £100 to £2.

Clydesdale and Yorkshire bank owner CYBG said a hit from the payment protection insurance (PPI) scandal has caused it to swing into the red.

The number of restaurants in England has risen by nearly 3,000 since the end of the recession despite recent high-profile closures, according to a new report.

Npower has become the latest firm to ramp up energy bills in a move that will hammer a million people.

Troubled retailer Carpetright has clinched emergency funding to help it keep trading with a £15m unsecured loan, the company confirmed on Friday.

Royal Bank of Scotland is to pay a $4.9bn (£3.6bn) settlement agreed with US regulators over claims it mis-sold toxic mortgage bonds in the run-up to the financial crisis.

Oil prices surged to their highest level since 2014 as US President Donald Trump’s plans to scrap the Iran deal raised the possibility of locking one of the biggest crude producers out of the market.

Aldi and Lidl have fired the latest salvo in Britain’s raging supermarket price war, pledging to keep prices lower than rivals in response to Sainsbury’s merger with Asda.

Bakery chain Greggs has warned full-year profits could flat-line after taking a sales hit from the Beast from the East and slower spring trading.

Retail sales growth fell “off a cliff” in April, a new report claims.

Companies are being urged to make a “major investment” in education to help prepare youngsters for the world of work.

Deliveroo has avoided classifying its self-employed workers as staff with the introduction of free accident insurance for 35,000 riders.

TalkTalk’s customer service is the worst among broadband providers, while Vodafone and Virgin Mobile have turned in below-average scores among mobile companies, an Ofcom survey has found.

A union is taking an employment tribunal case against courier firm Hermes in another challenge to the status of workers in the so-called gig economy.

A significant drop in construction work and sluggish manufacturing activity have contributed to the British economy recording its slowest paced growth for five years.

The East of England has missed out on a housing boom which saw the number of homes being registered over the last year reach its second highest level in a decade.

Waterstones is to accelerate its expansion plans after being sold to US hedge fund Elliott Advisors, the book chain’s boss has said.

Dozens of companies have signed a pledge to eliminate unnecessary plastic packaging by 2025.

Whitbread is to spin off Costa into a separately listed business.

Finance and data watchdogs are reportedly looking into IT issues at TSB that left online customers unable to access their money and some able to see other people’s accounts.

MoneySavingExpert founder Martin Lewis is launching a High Court legal battle to “give Facebook a bloody nose” and change the way it operates over claims the site is publishing scam adverts causing vulnerable people to hand over thousands of pounds to criminals.

Inflation unexpectedly dropped last month, providing some relief for squeezed households.

British firm De La Rue says it will not appeal against the government’s controversial decision to choose a Franco-Dutch company to make the new blue UK passports after Brexit.

Costa Coffee is pledging to recycle as many disposable cups as it sells by 2020 – and is urging others to follow suit.

Shopper footfall saw its steepest decline in more than seven years in March, according to new figures.

French shopping centre firm Klepierre has said it does not intend to make a formal offer for Hammerson, paving the way for the Bullring owner to seal a tie up with Chapelfield shopping centre owner Intu.

British Gas is to increase energy bills for 4.1 million dual fuel customers on its standard variable tariff by an average of 5.5%, or £60 a year, blaming rising wholesale energy and Government policy costs.

The importance of the European Union for UK exporters has been revealed in a new study showing strong growth in trade with the bloc.

Several private equity firms are understood to be circling Homebase as the DIY chain’s Australian owner plots an escape from its ill-fated £340m takeover.

Estate agents will be required to hold a professional qualification and encouraged to crack down on gazumping under plans to drive rogues out of the industry.

Former BHS owner Dominic Chappell plans to sue Sir Philip Green and contest a proposed boardroom ban in a bid to repair his “tarnished reputation” and resurrect his career.

The Beast from the East caused the biggest fall in high street retail sales for nearly a decade, according to new figures.

Magners owner C&C is set to acquire the wholesale arm of beleaguered firm Conviviality through a pre-pack administration.

The amount of money loaned by construction company directors to their own businesses to support them has risen by a third in the past year, new figures show.

Workers on the government’s national living wage would have to work an extra month to earn the same as those on the higher, voluntary rate, new research claims.

More than 150 million user accounts of diet and fitness app MyFitnessPal have been hacked, its owners said.

More than half of people estimate they spend more during British Summer Time than in the winter – paying an average of £154 more each month.

DFS says its takeover of Sofology is starting to bear fruit, compensating for the drag it says acquisitions put on profits.

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